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  1. #1

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    New to large format...workflow idea...

    Just bought a Sinar F2 and a 150mm Schneider lens....I still havent got a proper lens panel (waiting for it to arrive), I haven't got the trigger cable, no film yet, etc etc so I've just been messing about looking through the camera with an ill-fitting Arca Swiss recessed panel my friend gave me that I have taped up to the front.....

    As i keep on saying in my threads I have a Nikon D300 digital camera with which I do all my 'money' jobs on our web site www.ulookfierce.com. The plan with the 5 x 4 Sinar is to start a personal project I've always wanted to do - people portraits in b+w (no mystery here!) but felt the 'beauty' of image I'm after can only be achieved with a 5 x 4 camera and its lenses. I'm inspired by Karsh and people of that genre and my personal style is combining natural light with flash triggered by Pocket Wizards.

    So my idea is to use the Nikon as my 'polaroid' to check I have the lighting I want when firing off the flashes.....sure, it may be regarded as cheating in this forum (heh heh) but hey, its a cheaper way instead of wasting a whole load of expensive polaroid film......or is it.....should I use Polaroids instead?

  2. #2
    brummelisa's Avatar
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    Will you photograph your subjects with the same lightning and background every time? In that case you could use the DLSR to see that it's ok and then continiously use the same ratio during sessions.

    I don't think that you are sheating when using a digital camera. But you should probably know that you can not use the old 'What You See Is What You Get' - thing.

    Film, as you know have other dynamic data than digital and the display won't be able to show exact how the image looks like. You may use the histogram.

    Me, I use a Flash meter and just take a reading on the lit side of the face and increase the exposure with one f-stop (so it becomes lighter).

    / Marcus

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by brummelisa View Post
    Will you photograph your subjects with the same lightning and background every time? In that case you could use the DLSR to see that it's ok and then continiously use the same ratio during sessions.

    I don't think that you are sheating when using a digital camera. But you should probably know that you can not use the old 'What You See Is What You Get' - thing.

    Film, as you know have other dynamic data than digital and the display won't be able to show exact how the image looks like. You may use the histogram.

    Me, I use a Flash meter and just take a reading on the lit side of the face and increase the exposure with one f-stop (so it becomes lighter).

    / Marcus
    the plan is to compose the one shot for the person, in the one carefully considered location, with considered lighting...be it natural light coming in or with the help of flash......the idea is to create the one composition and take the one or two shots and that's it...session over....

    .....this will be in sharp contrast to the pressure I normally have in fashion type shoots where we're moving around and changing things, outfits, locations etc and having to get on the spot inspiration....

    what you're saying is exactly what I'm fearing...that what I see on the Nikon screen is gonna be miles away from what gets registered on the T-Max 100 Im planning to use.....

    ....perhaps I should use the Nikon to get the image going the right way with the flashes and then perhaps take an instant film shot to see if this translates into film or not......

    what you are doing is good actually as that obviously works for you and makes sense to me.....there's no cheating the light meter at the end of the day.....I will have to find out how much latitude T-Max 100 has when developed normally I guess....any ideas on who's tested this film out meticulously and could offer advice?

  4. #4

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    Aid the economy, buy Polaroid/Fuji instant film. Grin.

    The dynamic range of a Polaroid doesn't match your sheet film, either. Best to learn your flash meter to make sure the ratio between daylight and the added strobes are what you want.
    When I grow up, I want to be a photographer.

    http://www.walterpcalahan.com/Photography/index.html

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Pinholemaster View Post
    Aid the economy, buy Polaroid/Fuji instant film. Grin.

    The dynamic range of a Polaroid doesn't match your sheet film, either. Best to learn your flash meter to make sure the ratio between daylight and the added strobes are what you want.
    hahahah yes....aid the economy indeed.....yes, the flash meter is the obvious tool to solve the mysteries....I have a Gossen Mastersix I bought recently 2nd hand too.....its old but does the job....came in a nice leather case too.....niceeeeeeeee

  6. #6

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    Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, some here would love to see you fry your D with your studio-lighting......................

    Sync voltage's of any older flash will do that !!!!

    Please get yourself a Wein Safe Sync from B+H before you hook things up !

    And YES there are quite a few good flash-meters on Ebay for not too much.
    Learn how to use them and become a full member of the LF community.

    Peter

  7. #7

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    Don't forget that taking portraits with a 4x5 requires considerable patience on part of the photographer AND the subject. It's also a bit hard to get used to because once you put the film holder in, all you can do is hope your subject doesn't move and ruin your composition. After trying it myself I can see why Speed Graphics have those nice supplementary focusing gadgets like rangefinders and framing sights.

  8. #8

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    using the camera now....depth of field

    actually....as I'm new to 5 x 4 large format I'd like to run this past you....

    .....the depth of field issue is what I'm trying to get in my head as the lens starts at f5.6 all the way to f64 and you see a great amount of beautiful bokeh on what I'll call 'the focusing aperture' f5.6....

    my Sinar f2 has a depth of field calculator on one of the focusing knobs....I've learned how to use it....they say to focus first on the furthest point you want in focus....mark it on the ring and then focus on the nearest bit you want in focus.....this in turn lets you know you need say f16 to get the area you want in focus (superb actually....what a great way of knowing what's going to be in focus as opposed to those crappy depth of field preview buttons on DSLR's)

    so, in order to get a person in focus within the scene I was thinking of say focusing on a card held behind the person by an assistant (my wife!) IF said person is not leaning against a wall or a chair or something I can focus on....and then I focus on the tip of the nose for example.....or their belly if they're fat! hahhahaha.....anyway.....so this give me say f16 depth of field needed....

    so....once thats established I measure light on the face....if the ambient light gives me '15 (what I think is okay for a person to stay still at) at f16 or over then I dont need flash but if not then I'll put flash in and thus start measuring ....(by the way, remember I haven't used a meter, film etc in over 10 years!) till the flash gives me enough light to shoot at f16....

    am i missing anything?

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by archphoto View Post
    Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, some here would love to see you fry your D with your studio-lighting......................

    Sync voltage's of any older flash will do that !!!!

    Please get yourself a Wein Safe Sync from B+H before you hook things up !

    And YES there are quite a few good flash-meters on Ebay for not too much.
    Learn how to use them and become a full member of the LF community.

    Peter
    guys guys come on...the FORCE is strong in this one....I can do it....I have lived on the dark side but I now see the light!

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by domaz View Post
    Don't forget that taking portraits with a 4x5 requires considerable patience on part of the photographer AND the subject. It's also a bit hard to get used to because once you put the film holder in, all you can do is hope your subject doesn't move and ruin your composition. After trying it myself I can see why Speed Graphics have those nice supplementary focusing gadgets like rangefinders and framing sights.
    i have a Hasselblad magnifier i use to check images on the dslr in broad daylight that I've been using to see images on the ground glass.
    I also bought (with the Sinar prchase) a bellows with a magnifier (cant remember the name of the thing!!!!!) that allows me to view at angles as well.....my father-in-law saw it all and told me if all else fails I can become an accordion player.....

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